Malaysia to … Malaysia?

Life in the fish bowl is comfortable. So, should I stay there?

I once said to my friend that maybe I shouldn’t have named my blog “Malaysia2Adelaide” because it may end up being “Malaysia2Singapore” or “Malaysia2Perth” for all I know. But here’s a possibility I have not considered. Could it end up being Malaysia2Malaysia?

I suppose you can call it Murphy’s law. I’ve finally rented out my apartment, packed away most of my things, given away 3/4 of my possessions and am about to hand in my “I quit” letter when I started getting calls … job offers, actually.

In a span of a few weeks, I had four  job offers. Two agreed I could work with them in some way from Australia. The last job is so enticing it is making me consider staying in Malaysia!

It’s a managerial position, with overseas travel included (in fact, they’re interested in me because I have travelled extensively overseas) and a chance to be involved in an exciting industry that is growing around the world. This job could be the gateway to a possible job abroad too, if I play the cards right.

I listed the pros and cons for my situation:

Accepting the job offer


  • Definite career advancement
  • Higher pay means more savings, and that’s actually important to me
  • Get to learn new skills in line with my experience
  • Overseas travel
  • I get to hang out with my friends and family
  • Enjoy a comfortable, financially-secure lifestyle


  • May have no time to recuperate from burnout from previous job
  • Lose the chance of carving a life for myself in Australia. I will probably never get the chance to do this again. <– the possibility of this haunts me greatly.
  • May have little time to fulfill my dreams – I want to write a few books and publish them
  • It’s life in the same fish bowl. It’s safe, and I will never know what it’s like to live without the tether of a job. As a result, my fears of losing a job is still there.
  • I don’t get to enjoy a different culture, get rejuvenated
  • I don’t get to live a healthier lifestyle – fresh food, more physical work, more walking around, parks etc
  • My dream of developing myself spiritually in a quieter environment will be delayed or will possibly not happen.
  • Stressful — jams, possible long hours, crazy commute, feeling inadequate at the job

Move to Australia


  • A chance to explore a new culture and country
  • A chance to experience the four seasons again
  • New friends and adventures
  • A chance to explore a new field – healthcare
  • A healthier lifestyle: More walking, a job that entails lots of physical work
  • Time to explore spirituality
  • Time to do my creative projects
  • Australia’s beautiful parks, beaches
  • An opportunity to battle my fears and conquer them – my fear of joblessness, financial insecurity


  • Stress from worry about getting a job
  • Financially risky
  • Job uncertainty – tough to get a job in Adelaide
  • Separated from family
  • Career path may be affected; I’d have to start from the beginning

From what I can see — I’d have to choose between Career (staying in Malaysia) and Lifestyle (leaving for Australia).

I thought of asking the company if it’s possible for me to work for them from Oz (I don’t see how though) or for them to wait for me for at least six months. No harm trying, I suppose.

I know I can’t let this Oz chance go, not when I’m 2 months shy of landing in Australia. I don’t want to be haunted by what ifs!

Besides, one of my colleagues has just left for New Zealand on a similar adventure. It made me realise how much I want this dream.

Ah, I’m so torn! Any input from you guys would be much appreciated!


14 thoughts on “Malaysia to … Malaysia?

  1. I would really take time out, spend time not doing anything but relax, and pray and read bible for some period of time to wait for inspiration 🙂

    but to the comments you put – “Lose the chance of carving a life for myself in Australia. I will probably never get the chance to do this again. <– the possibility of this haunts me greatly." – you can cut that off. Never say never. If you work towards it and God is opening a way, you will always have a chance, again.

    • You know, hearing you talk about the relax, pray and read the bible makes me long for the sabbatical already! And I feel relieved when you said that I don’t have to worry about chances. The same logic can be applied to the job offer. One day, God willing, I may have a chance to be part of such a pioneering industry again. But right now, I have to take care of my needs: And right now I need to be inspired, to be encouraged, and to experience life in another place 🙂

  2. I found your blog yesterday, and as a fellow person about to move abroad, I’m really enjoying reading it! I think it’s definitely worth asking the company if they can work around you in some way or let you work from Oz (do they have a branch office there?). If there’s a lot of overseas travel involved in the job, they may even have very flexible attitudes that way… Hope things work out for you!

    • Oh I just read your blog. London to Sweden? How lovely! How has your move been? I’ll check out your blog from now on – I love reading about the adventures of people on the move. 🙂

      • I’ll keep reading yours too, thanks for your comments on mine! My move has only just started really (all I know at the moment is when I’m going) so I’m still in the euphoria state – the increasing panic of where to live, how to move etc is still ahead of me, haha 🙂

  3. Hi Susan,

    I would say stick to your plan, come to Australia and experience it. Even though it did not turn up well, you have nothing to lose but a job in Malaysia. This is a chance in a life time, it is either now or never.

    I have had too much of worries too before I came, when my career was in good progress and I loved my job. However, I took the chance to come over to Adelaide. I told myself, I have nothing to lose but a job back home. I must say, I’d been through a period of tough time trying to find a job related to my field and it was really stressful. Friends have been telling me it would probably take a little longer to land with a decent job, but the 6 weeks was like 6 long months for me. 😦

    We have to be well prepared no matter how mentally strong we are. I got a job in my field after 6 weeks of hard work searching high and low (it finally paid off).

    I now enjoy my life more in Adelaide, of course still home sick at times. 🙂

    Don’t let yourself regret for something that you did not even try. 🙂

    • You’re right, Chris. It’s now or never. Six weeks, by the way, is really, really good. Especially getting a job in your own industry! Perhaps you should share with us how you did it cos some people can try for literally years and never break through.

      • One tip for “quick” success – Ask locals who have experience in the new place how applications should be done – never just assume what we have learnt in secondary school decade(s) is still valid for today’s industry/market – we need to understand how and what current employees are expecting, then we have reduced the “risk” of being “rejected on arrival (of applications)”.

  4. Pingback: Adelaide, here I come! Again. | Malaysia2Adelaide

  5. I had exactly the same situation five years ago. I took the chance and never look back since. I am now living in wellington. I really enjoy the work life balance here.

  6. How I did it:

    1. Tailor-made resume for each of the job you apply, as well as cover letter. I rewrote my resume and cover letter for each position I applied for, focusing on what the role required, had strong key words that emphasized my experiences relevant to the areas the role is looking for. It has to be in Australia resume format though. I tried to keep my resume to not more than 3 pages. I had spent a tremendous amount of time working on my resume and cover letter.

    2. Once you sent out resume(s), be prepared to receive any call anytime. We do not want to sound unprepared when any potential employers rang. This is the first impression you will give to the person who rang you, so, speak confidently. I noticed if we can communicate well on the phone, mostly likely we will get a chance for an face to face interview.

    3. Next, once you are secured with an interview, you have to be well prepared for the interview. I checked out a lot of sites to see what are the most commonly asked questions during interview and prepared points on those questions. Do not write an essay for those questions and trying to remember it. The points only help us to speak naturally when questions were posted to us during interviews, at least we do not look blank. Remember to always give examples on each of the points you mentioned. In most cases, interviewers would want us to give examples, elaborating how we did it to deal/resolve a scenario etc.

    4. Read the company’s background. Make use of the information to help you gain extra impression points during an interview. I had done that and I noticed the interviewers were quite happy that I knew a lot about the company. I tried to link the information to my experiences, i.e., understand the company products and services, directions that relevant to the domain knowledge I have.

    5. Be prepared with some technical questions for those who looking for IT role.

    6. Good references. Be nice to your current reporting manager because you still need them to provide good references when you apply for a job here. Trust me, they do call for reference checks.

    7. Be positive even though it will be extremely exhausted when we are jobless. Only when we are positive, we will attract more good things to us. 🙂

    The bottom line is “hard work”, there is no free lunch. The more you prepared, the more chance you will secure with an interview and do well in those interviews which eventually ended up with a job offer. 🙂

  7. Pingback: I finally quit my job! And sometimes I do panic about it | Malaysia to Adelaide

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